Curriculum

All Film Connection courses employ the mentored externship method of learning in one-on-one, hands-on sessions with a working professional filmmaker proficient in your field of study. This allows you to learn at your own pace, in real world, practical application situations, and focus on particular areas of interest to you.

Film Connection provides unique, mentor-based programs that are affordable, so you can stay in control of your finances.

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Film Connection Courses


All Film Connection courses employ the mentored externship method of learning in one-on-one, hands-on sessions with a working professional filmmaker proficient in your field of study. This allows you to learn at your own pace, in real world, practical application situations, and focus on particular areas of interest to you.

In the Film Connection for Film Production & Editing program, you will study directing, producing and screenwriting inside a real film production company in your city as you develop your movie idea with a professional filmmaker. Then, upon meeting the necessary requirements, you will be given the opportunity to fly to Los Angeles or New York and pitch your film idea to an executive who could buy or get your movie made.

Film Production & Editing Details

In the Film Connection for Cinematography program, you will learn the techniques involved in capturing a moving image and will start to develop “the eye of the DP.” The cinematographer is literally the set ‘magician.’ DPs are responsible for the technological wizardry required to get the needed shots and to shape light to achieve the director’s desired artistic effect.

Cinematography Details

Workshops

The screenwriter is the person who creates, takes, or adapts an idea and formulates a screenplay. Without the writer, there would be no movie. Period. He or she is the starting gate. He or she is the person who gets the ball rolling down the hill.
 
In the Film Connection for Screenwriting workshop, you will learn the elements that make for a “Killer Script” by developing and writing your own feature length screenplay under the direction and mentorship of a working professional screenwriter.

Screenwriting Details

In many ways the film editor is the most misunderstood of all film professionals. Often considered just a film technician, a good editor is so much more than that. He or she is also a qualified storyteller of the highest order.
 
In the Film Connection for Film Editing workshop, you will develop your knowledge of storytelling and screenplay structure as the foundational blueprint of a film. You will also develop your technical understanding of editing as an extern to a professional editor in a post-production facility.

Film Editing Details

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Meet our Mentors

Why learn from teachers when you can learn from the professionals?

John Boros Film Connection Mentor

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John Boros Film Connection Mentor

Background

“The captain and anchor of our ship, guiding his crew with a father’s compassion and an uncle’s knack for mischief.”

Credits; The Fly, EMI Orientation

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Edward Isin Film Connection Mentor

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Edward Isin Film Connection Mentor

Background

FightZone Presents, Sacred Waters, The Wishing Stone, Dawg Fight

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Tina Miller Film Connection Mentor

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Tina Miller Film Connection Mentor

Background

Storytelling through video, aided by full-service in house production and post capabilities. Many of our pieces use documentary technique or a high-energy concept or brand approach.

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Dennis James Lee Film Connection Mentor

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Dennis James Lee Film Connection Mentor

Background

Credits: Hawaii Five-0, Behind Enemy Lines II: Axis of Evil, Dragon Wars: D-War, Soap Girl, Secret of the Five Fingers

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Erik Angra Film Connection Mentor

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Erik Angra Film Connection Mentor

Background

UFC 111 fight – Cinematographer, Animal Planet – Most Outrageous – 3 documentaries – EA Sports international commercials Kyrie Irving – NBC – HBO – Full flight features – Very astute cinematographer – Worked on film “21” – Edited TV series “Folk Lorist” – Extreme Makeover – AD Bo Burnham – International campaigns for Coca Cola

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Steven Schott Film Connection Mentor

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Steven Schott Film Connection Mentor

Background

Credits: Jeff Foxworthy Show, The Lost Calendar, The Final Season

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Daniel Sollinger Film Connection Mentor

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Daniel Sollinger Film Connection Mentor

Background

Producer: The Alphabet Killer, Six Ways to Sunday, Alone in the Dark II, In My Sleep, Girls Against Boys, Deadliest Warrior, Age of Kali

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Joe Van Wie Film Connection Mentor

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Joe Van Wie Film Connection Mentor

Background

Following a spirited and notorious adolescence in Northeastern Pennsylvania, Joe did a stretch at New York University and ended up spending nearly a decade as an accomplished part of the New York City’s lively film and TV industry. During this time, he racked up credits ranging from producing feature films premiering at international film festivals to directing and producing content for a variety of national cable television networks. His most recent film is the locally-shot award-winning feature Forged. Joe is an active board member on the boards of Dress for Success, The Scranton Club and the American Advertising Federation of NEPA. Joe is also a member of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, the American Association of Political Consultants, and two time Pollie award winner.

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John Lux Film Connection Mentor

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John Lux Film Connection Mentor

Background

John Lux is the Chief Operating Officer for the IDEAS media and experience design company, which employs film program graduates nationwide. The projects his company handles stretch from Florida, to Europe, and as far as Shangai, China.

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Rebecca Ramon Film Connection Mentor

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Rebecca Ramon Film Connection Mentor

Background

Rebecca Ramon hails from Battle Creek, MI and is a proud Midwestern girl. She believes that’s exactly what keeps her down to earth and youthful. With a BA in Broadcasting & Cable production from Western Michigan University, and an MFA in Film Production from Chapman University, one of the top ten film schools in the nation, she’s definitely standing on her own two feet. Not only does Rebecca have a formal education, her mentor for post production was Paul Seydor, a member of ACE; the honorary society of motion picture editors. Paul edited movies such as “White Men Can’t Jump” and “This Christmas”. In other words, she has learned from the best, and has over ten years of experience, which ranges from pre-production to post-production in several mediums. Most importantly, she has the passion to share her knowledge as a mentor.

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Tabitha Hartbauer Film Connection Mentor

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Tabitha Hartbauer Film Connection Mentor

Background

The BSP editing facility sets the standard for editing in Colorado. Three video edit suites utilize “Premiere Pro CS6”, “Final Cut Pro” and “DaVinci” and project Panasonic High Definition 1080p images on to 110” Stewart Screens.

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Jason Hewitt Film Connection Mentor

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Jason Hewitt Film Connection Mentor

Background

Odd Thomas, 13 Sins, Blood Out, Left Behind, Season of the Witch, Cabin Fever 2: Spring Fever, The Outsider

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Steve Riach Film Connection Mentor

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Steve Riach Film Connection Mentor

Background

Steve is an award winning producer, director and writer of over 250 films, documentaries, television shows and home video properties, including specials from the Olympics, Super Bowls, World Series, NBA and NCAA Championships, and college football bowl games.

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Avery Williams Film Connection Mentor

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Avery Williams Film Connection Mentor

Background

Avery O. Williams works steadily in both the film and theater worlds. He is the co-writer of the feature film Directing Eddie starring Valerie Perrine and Jade Barrymore, directed by Lawrence Kaldor which premiered at the 2001 Sundance Film Festival and was voted Best Comedy at the 2001 New York International Independent Film & Video Festival. He wrote and directed the industrial film for the City of Atalanta entitled Surviving Domestic Violence and he wrote and co-produced the film short The Willie Witch Projects, which was showcased at the 2000 Cannes Film Festival and is distributed by Trimark Pictures in their compilation entitled The Bogus Witch Project. Other short subject screenplays that have been made into films include Notes In A Minor Key, The Willie Witch Projects and The Chocolate Factory, Part 1.

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Harry Findysz Film Connection Mentor

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Harry Findysz Film Connection Mentor

Background

“The Film Connection Program uses real world people to mentor real world jobs.”

-Harry Findysz, Tucson, Arizona, Southern Arizona Video Productions

Producer of Live Television, Music Videos, Documentaries, Winner of Ashbury Best Music Documentary 2016 Linda Chorney The Cantina

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Greg Freeman Film Connection Mentor

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Greg Freeman Film Connection Mentor

Background

Greg Freeman is an award-winning Director of Photography with nearly two decades in news, sports, entertainment, special programming, documentaries, and commercials. Greg has directed projects for nearly every major television network including ABC, Discovery, ESPN, HBO, HGTV, NBC, PBS, and more.

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Tom Malloy Film Connection Mentor

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Tom Malloy Film Connection Mentor

Background

The Alphabet Killer, Love N’ Dancing, The Attic, Hero of the Underworld, Law & Order: SVU

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Jason Jackson Film Connection Mentor

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Jason Jackson Film Connection Mentor

Background

Past productions include LMN’s Monstresses; Investigation Discovery’s Cuff Me If You Can; America’s Most Haunted and UFO’s Crashed my Vacation; America’s Most Secret and I Faked My Own Death for Discovery; National Geographic’s 42 Ways to Kill Hitler and Don’t Try This At Home; Vampire Secrets and Ancient Ink for The History Channel; Las Vegas Bikers for truTV; Weather Channel’s Full Force Nature; True Confessions for WE-TV as well as Beyond Death and Investigative Reports for A&E.

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Matthew Temple Film Connection Mentor

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Matthew Temple Film Connection Mentor

Background

“All aspects of filmmaking are primarily experiential, so a program like this one gives the students what they need most- the opportunity to DO.” — Matthew Temple, Producer of “The Advocate” and Universal’s “Dragon Nest: Warriors’ Dawn”

Matthew Temple has long stood at the crossroads of art and social action–his work and passion split between telling stories and participating in the creation of new paradigms wherein new stories for the future can be created. As a storyteller, he works as a screenwriter, director, producer and actor.  As a social entrepreneur, he is the founder and president of the non-profit WeStrive, where he is the executive director of the Wandering Reel Traveling Film Festival. Temple is currently VP of Production and Development for Mili Pictures Worldwide.

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Nick Kielhold Film Connection Mentor

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Nick Kielhold Film Connection Mentor

Background

Nick is your basic military brat. Except for the fact that neither of his parents were actually in the military. But, like many military families, his family moved several times during his youth, living in Omaha, Chicago, and Minneapolis among other places. And although he wasn’t living on military bases, he developed a deep interest in History, and all things military. Ask him about the Battle of Tarawa in 1943, and you may just get an entire lesson on the Pacific Theater of World War II. When he’s not painting tanks for his war game simulations, Nick works here. He shoots video. He edits video. He talks about World War II. A lot. Anyone who comes into contact with Nick will become much better versed in the history of mankind and all the wars it has produced over the years. Nick provided 50% of the formula that founded Full Effect Productions over 18 years ago, and has played a vital role in its success. Nick is a 1987 graduate of the University of South Dakota, and his previous experience includes working at a local TV station as Commercial Videographer/Producer. Not taking a cue from his parents, Nick has decided to keep his family in one city, and has called Sioux City, Iowa home since 1988. He has a wife of 29 years and an adult son and daughter. In his free time, Nick can be found studiously painting small military ships, tanks and airplanes. He has amassed large numbers of these items that comprise entire military units used for battles at the MAGECON gaming convention. He’s a film buff who’s recently installed home theater has him positively giddy, and hardly ever seeing daylight.

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Logan Hale Film Connection Mentor

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Logan Hale Film Connection Mentor

Background

Logan is a lifelong filmmaker. With 8 years of experience in Event and Experiential Marketing, Logan has a passion for communicating the brand message and essence with artistic quality and creativity.

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Megan Kennedy Film Connection Mentor

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Megan Kennedy Film Connection Mentor

Background

Megan is an award-winning photographer and videographer with over 10 years of video production experience, from directing and editing national PSA campaigns to producing feature-length documentaries.

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Calix Lewis Reneau Film Connection Mentor

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Calix Lewis Reneau Film Connection Mentor

Background

Calix Lewis Reneau is a producer and writer, known for An Even Worse Joke (2013), Canyon Road (2013) and My Cousin’s Ghetto Wedding (2016).

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Sandy Stern Film Connection Mentor

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Sandy Stern Film Connection Mentor

Background

Producer, Being John Malcovich, Saved!, Velvet Goldmine, Pump Up the Volume, Thirteen Conversations about One Thing, Equinox, Red Hot

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Rob Helmstetter Film Connection Mentor

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Rob Helmstetter Film Connection Mentor

Background

Rob has experience with major corporate ad agencies Publicis, Medicus, Digitas based in New York and Chicago. He has always been on the bleeding edge of technology and believes that services should be simple for the viewers.

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Ryan Kindahl Film Connection Mentor

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Ryan Kindahl Film Connection Mentor

Background

Documentaries, Music Videos, Commercials

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Derek Koen Film Connection Mentor

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Derek Koen Film Connection Mentor

Background

Washington Koen Media Productions is a full-service media production company specializing in video productions, streaming video solutions, presentations and audio/visual support for organizations both large and small. Whether corporate video presentations, documentaries, live streaming of meetings, or web streaming solutions, our highly-skilled and creative team- with over 20 years of combined experience – using today's latest tools and technology, can produce quality results for your company

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Brian Glazen Film Connection Mentor

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Brian Glazen Film Connection Mentor

Background

In 2013, Brian Glazen co-produced an independent film called Fishing Without Nets. This film went on to win for Best Direction at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival and recently sold to Twentieth Century Fox for distribution to theaters nation wide.

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Laura Scheiner Film Connection Mentor

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Laura Scheiner Film Connection Mentor

Background

Seasoned film development executive, writer and script consultant with exceptional story development and script analysis skills. As a development executive I’m particularly adept at pinpointing the problems in a script and coming up with creative solutions. I’m a passionate collaborator who creates a fertile environment where writers can bloom and scripts can meet their potential.

As a writer for hire I pride myself as bringing my story sense, knowledge, talent and unbridled imagination to the table in order to bring the producer’s vision to life.

As a storyteller I always aim to entertain, engage, surprise, move and provoke.

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Craig Constant Film Connection Mentor

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Craig Constant Film Connection Mentor

Background

Craig Constant is an Executive Producer at Constant66 Films. After leaving the Marine Corps, he worked as a Photojournalist/Editor for the Fox News Channel for close to seven years. Since then, he’s worked as a Sound Technician, Production Sound Mixer, Camera Operator and Director of Photography.

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Choose a Film Company in Your City

We provide access to vetted local film companies in over 250 cities across the country. With Film Connection, there’s no need to relocate.


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What is the Next Step?

We get it. This isn’t your normal four-year college requiring coursework not associated with your area of interest. We are a post-secondary institution or trade school that's different in its approach. Here's how you can get more info:


Request Information Externship Location Call Admissions

Titanic, The Avengers, Avatar, Roma, Juno, Lady Bird. No matter if the movie has a budget of $100 million or $10,000, each one has a story to tell and someone to tell it. At Film Connection, we want to give our externs the access to learn about the industry from professionals who are already making films, day in, day out.

We offer programs and workshops that cover every aspect of the filmmaking journey. If accepted, you will receive one-on-one mentoring from an industry professional, giving you first-hand experience in what it takes to make a career in the business.

Film Connection Directing Approach

There’s more to directing that yelling “action!” or “cut!” while on the sound stage. Of course, you already know that. But do you know about blocking, what a gaffer does, or the importance of a grip? And we’re not talking about an online definition - as a director, you’ll need to know how all of the various roles and crew position work together in the creation of a movie.

That’s the knowledge you’ll receive when enrolling in The Film Connection directing courses. Working within a professional film production company, you’ll extern directly with a filmmaking expert. At a four-year college, conventional trade school or film school, your teacher may be dealing with many different students at once.

We feel the one-on-one approach, access, opportunities and methodology of Film Connection’s directing courses are more beneficial for those who want to get started working in film. Instead of waiting for your turn to ask a question, you could be on-location helping the director refocus a feisty leading man, alter the lighting, or look over the dailies. Of course, it’s not all craft services in exotic locales. Much of the work actually happens long before the first reel of film is loaded into the camera.

The Phases of Production

Pre-production meetings are filled with collaboration between the director, the producer, location manager, and unit production manager (UPM) to create a schedule for the shoot. A film is rarely shot in sequence (from the first scene to the last). Rather, efficiency and time and availability of talent are factors taken into account and a schedule and finalized shooting script are nailed down during this phase of production.

From there, a project will advance onto “production.” During this phase, shooting starts and long days can be spent on the sound stage, back alley, or any of the many shooting locations for the film. The full crew, comprised of the following roles, begins production: Assistant Director Unit Production Manager, Director of Photography (DP or Cinematographer), Assistant Camera (AC), Gaffer, Grip, Sound Recordist, Hair & Makeup Department, and Production Assistant(s).

In post-production AKA “post,” the director gets to working with an editor to make sure their vision makes it to the screen. At this point they may also create “sizzle reels” to entice potential buyers and ultimately sell the film if it hasn’t already been optioned.

Learn Directing by Seeing and Doing (along with the bookwork)

With Film Connection, you can learn about all of the phases of production as you extern with a professional filmmaker who can explain it all to you and answer any questions you may have, all so that you can attain a real world understanding of what it takes to make a movie. From the moment it’s merely an idea until it’s sold and distributed for audiences to enjoy.

Film Connection Screenwriting Methodology

Just want to write movies? With us, you get remote one-on-one training with an experienced filmmaker who knows what it takes to get a script made and on the screen. The Film Connection screenwriting mentored-externship will give you the foundation you need to draw upon to ultimately write your Killer Script.

It starts with the classics. From a galaxy far, far away to a gin joint in western Morocco, you and your mentor will discuss what made those scripts so appealing and how reading the best will help you become a better writer. Understanding why Rocky needs an Apollo - and even the other way around - is what gives a script its life.

What do you want to write about?

Is there a book from your childhood you’ve always wanted to adapt for the big screen? Or a story about a time in your life which had a profound effect on you? The story is the backbone of a film - make it a good one. Story structure, character development, and the genre and theme you’re writing are all foundational aspects of the craft we’ll dig into in preparation for you to begin writing your own screenplay.

Outlines, treatments, and even the correct screenplay format are covered in the curriculum and lessons with your mentor, prior to diving into the first draft. By the time you start, you’ll have a good handle on what your script will look like. Just remember - it’s a first draft. There are a few more drafts coming, so don’t worry about being perfect.

Rewrites, polishing, reads, agents, and eventually selling your screenplay are some of the final steps you’ll learn in the Film Connection screenwriting courses. Even becoming a member of the Screenwriters Guild of America and when to get paid are examined. This is a complete workshop covering all aspects of writing a script.

Clearly, screenwriting is more than sitting at a desk with a keyboard, screen, and a big pot of coffee. But it doesn’t have to be as expensive as attending a four-year university, either. Film Connection screenwriting training costs a fraction of so many other writing programs and scriptwriting couses, and no, you won’t have to move to L.A., New York, or other entertainment hubs to get the education you need.

If you enroll in Film Connection directing externship, you will work with one of our professional mentors at a production facility, on-set,or on shoots. As for your schedule, that's established by you and your mentor. We do, however, ask that you commit to the schedule set since our mentors are busy working professionals who don't have time to adjust their schedules on the fly.

If you choose to study only screenwriting, you will be connect with your mentor one-on-one via online video conferencing or on the phone. Your screenwriting mentor will show you how to turn your story idea into a workable concept for a film. From there, they will advise you, read your work, and will coach you on how to go from idea to the finished draft and beyond.

It takes a lot of hard work to write a Killer Script or direct a film that makes it onto the festival circuit. But at Film Connection, we believe getting access it takes to learn the process of writing for the screen should be well within every driven person's reach. Ready to start working (and working hard) towards a career as a director or screenwriter? Apply today.

About Our Programs

Directors, producers, and screenwriters are responsible for telling a story and hiring the people to take their vision and get it on the big screen.

Cinematographers and editors help frame the scene, set the pace, capture the mood and make it all come together. Their importance to a successful film cannot be understated.

That’s why our director, producer, screenwriting, cinematography and editing programs are taught by seasoned professionals. These experts in their field will assist aspiring producers, directors, screenwriters directors of photography (DPs) and editors learn the ropes, whether it’s filming commercials, industrials, features, documentaries, television and beyond. Get mentored and attain the foothold you need to launch into a rewarding career in the film industry.

Coursework is delivered via distance education and completed at a location determined by the student. Externship locations can be up to 60 miles away from the student’s address. The externship mentor will work with each student on structuring a specific schedule, the student agrees that he/she will be available to meet with the mentor for a minimum of two sessions per week.

Film Connection provides unique, mentor-based programs that are affordable, so you can stay in control of your finances.

New! Finance your education with Climb.
Get approved in minutes with no impact to your credit score.